writing again

This year I will be writing again.

That’s a statement of commitment, of aspiration, of obedience and stewardship … but also one of hopefulness tinged with fear.

I lost my mojo in 2017. I’m not sure how to explain why (in just a few sentences) but even now, as I’m writing and re-writing and re-starting and starting over again and feeling verbally constipated and questioning every thought that comes to my mind – I’m fighting the oppression, doubt and intimidation – the voice of criticism and questioning – that comprehensively beat me (specifically in relation to my writing) in 2018.

I hate how derailed I’ve been. I hate how much power I’ve given to a voice that’s not speaking the truth and life of God. 

But this year I will be writing again.

“Your message is for ministry.”

Running parallel to the paralysis that carried over from the end of 2017, last year was the most freeing, affirming and empowering time I’ve ever known – an odd juxtaposition.

I feel like God has done a Mufasa on me – you know, the scene from the Lion King where he takes Simba to the top of Pride Rock and says “Look Simba, everything the light touches is our kingdom” (God often teaches me in Disney metaphors and quotes – don’t judge me – He knows my heart language.)  God has lifted my chin to cause me to look up and around and see so much possibility and opportunity, and then let me loose in it! I feel like I’m in the sweetest ministry spot; where everything that I’ve been privileged to experience and learn, is combining with all of my gifts, skills and passions, and I’m more confident than ever in my shape, call and capacity. By confident I mean, I am completely aware that anything of wisdom or value I have to offer comes from God and His resource for those things is inexhaustible – so, let’s go!!

Years ago, when I was feeling the final prompts to write the book, I was wrestling writing-doubts and commented to a friend, “Perhaps the message of this book is just for me.” She fired back, “No, when God gives you a message, it’s for ministry.” Boom!

So, this year I’m writing again. Because He keeps giving me messages, so I’ll keep handing them over for ministry.

 

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why you should send handwritten notes


In my box of treasures I have a handwritten letter from September, 1984. 

In the weeks before I received it, my grandparents had been tragically killed in a car accident. They were beautiful, Godly, much-loved people and a great loss to our family and their wide circle of friends. 

Enid was an older friend of our family. She had taken the time to write so that I would get a letter of my own in the midst of all the fall out for my parents and others as they processed what was needed to deal with both their grief and practical needs. 

It was special at the time and every time I come across it I am reminded again of the gift it was to me. 

I was recently chatting with a group of school teachers with many years of experience. We were swapping stories about our students and also our own teachers when one shared a story of connecting with a 26 year old ex-student who remembered receiving a “welcome to our class” letter from her 21 years earlier

In quick succession we all shared stories of letters given or received that had continued to be significant decades after they’d be written.

An encouragement note exchanged on a youth camp. 

A letter of condolence or care from a time of particular difficulty. 

A card of congratulations for an achievement or milestone. 

A note to commemorate a special experience or occasion. 

The more stories we shared the more we were compelled to go home and pick up a pen. 

How about you? Have you kept handwritten letters that have particular significance for you? Who could you drop a letter to today?